Andrew W. Mellon Graduate Fellow in the Humanities
2010—2011 Forum on Virtuality
Genre Trouble: Gender, Lyric, and the Long Poem
This dissertation analyzes the ways in which avant-garde long poems written by women after World War II confront the relationship between lived gender and poetic genre. I propose that genre appears as a kind of “trouble” akin to that theorized by Judith Butler in her formative work Gender Trouble: as a space of both indeterminacy and possibility, and as an inevitable problem of modern subjectivity. Drawing on the fields of poetics, queer theory, and genre theory, this project argues that the revision of previously feminized lyric modes in postwar women’s poetry rewrites the relationship between gender and poetic form.